Liverpool Vs Arsenal (PL)


#601

Sigh… now the dust has settled…

  1. Lichsteiner. I want to start by admitting I got it wrong when I shouldn’t have. I follow Serie A as much as anyone on these boards and I was privy to the decline of Lichsteiner and the fact Juventus had been actively trying to replace him for a few seasons before they eventually shifted him. On the surface it looked like a no brainer to me – an experienced right back to come in and play maybe 10 or so games a season covering our first choice. He’s obviously suffered because Emery persists with a high line, has played him at CB at times and so I feel it’s not fair to shift all the blame on him. But at the same time, his positioning at RB has been appalling for a guy of his experience and coming from a league famed for its defensive nous.
  2. Emery. Never going to rush judgment as I feel he’s been dealt a hard hand inheriting a poor and disjointed squad and also not being helped by the litany of poor summer transfer dealings. But the manager has to be prepared to shoulder some of the blame too. Defensively we have not been good enough and I’d argue this is as bad as I have ever seen us defensively in my lifetime. Players like Kolasinac, Mustafi, Lichsteiner, Koscielny and our stoppers Leno and Cech are simply not good enough. I’ll give Sokratis the benefit of the doubt despite his horror showing and I think Bellerin is the ideal full back for an Emery system. But we have been poor and that’s not all down to personnel. It’s also down to the manager and the high line and lack of defensive organisation is concerning.
  3. 4-4-2. Looked to me yesterday like we held a 4-4-2 shape for a lot of the game and I was actually a fan of the idea. Up until we conceded the first goal I actually felt like we had a chance to come away with something. The system looked correct and despite the harrowing result – I think Emery got the system right yesterday. I don’t think you can legislate for the errors. Liverpool did not score a single goal that could not have been avoided yesterday. Two really poor penalties to give away, comical defending for Firmino’s first and second and to be honest with you just poor positioning and movement for Mane’s goal. And it’s something I felt happened with Wenger too – sometimes he got the system right and it was just disastrous defending that cost us. Something has to change and fast.
  4. Midfield. As much as we piss and moan about how bad we are defensively can we just take some time to acknowledge how bad we are in midfield too? Torreira has been an excellent addition but the unbeaten run really papered over how bad Xhaka can be at times. His forward passing, whilst a welcome addition to the team, is just not that special. And I don’t want to keep kidding myself that he might eventually be the top level midfielder we all hoped when we spent big (at the time) money on him. Guendouzi shouldn’t be playing so frequently and Elneny is a non-entity.
  5. Wide men. I don’t think Iwobi had a bad game yesterday and he actually showed a willingness to want to beat his man. If we had a good quality wide man with the same willingness we’d be a much more dangerous team. I mean let’s be honest, playing with AMN and Iwobi away at Anfield says a lot about the state of our squad. And let’s not act like Ozil and Mkhitaryan would have made a tremendous difference anyway. One has a poor away record in big games and the other barely shows up. Plus they’re both far more effective playing through the centre too.

#602

#603

On the subject of Lichsteiner clearly coming to the PL at his age to a team that is abysmal defensively is not helping him.

If he’d have joined Spurs, this current Liverpool team and the like he wouldn’t be in such positions but the individual errors he’s making are almost unforgiveable considering his pedigree. He’s getting simple defensive actions such as clearances awfully wrong, I suppose he’s caught the Arsenal bug good and proper. Well, that or he’s just shit now.


#604

Can’t argue with any of your analysis there!

One thing I’m glad you mentioned yesterday was our midfield. Naturally with the defensive calamity on show that it got overlooked by pundits but our midfield in general is atrocious. There’s a common reason why Aubameyang was not involved and why our defence was more exposed than usual and that’s our midfield. Even in games we’ve impressed in this season (such as the NLD) our midfield has never had any control and has been poor in all fundamentals of a midfield (possession, creativity, keeping the shape of the team). It’s probably why Torreira has been such a revelation, as he covers space particularly well and hides some of the basic deficiencies that Xhaka/Guendouzi etc have.


#605

I love these posts.

I want to say something about point 3 though. While I agree it seemed to be a decent enough shape for the game, looking back I think Emery was wrong to play so defensively.

Liverpool dominated the start as we looked to get men behind the ball and not commit forward or take the game to them in any way. Our opener came against the run of play.

When you have a defence as bad as ours, with the propensity for such individual errors, that’s a recipe for disaster.

Playing the game with an increased pressure on our paper thin defence was a bad bad move, and I think is a huge reason we got humped the way we did.

Shades of Barca 6-1 at PSG for me.

I don’t get why we didn’t play Ozil or more realistically Lacazette, to give them something to think about and give the defence some room to breathe like we did the home game.

The mentality was all wrong. It’s something that is worrying because while I’m all on board the Emery train for now, this is a huge problem that has been levelled at him before.


#606

We have two world class strikers we dont need wingers. Play 3 at the back with wingbacks and that solves the winger issue and lets us play our two best attackers every game


Alvaro Morata
#607

If you look at the team Liverpool put out, compared with ours, the difference is clear.
None of our players are good enough to get in their first team.
They have a manager who identifies weaknesses in the team and then buys the best players available to fill them.
They have a board ready to back their manager financially, and they have proved their ambition is as great as his.
But most of all they play as a team and are effective defensively, as well as going forward, and are well organised.
They are playing with confidence because they have world class players in all positions and true leaders like VVD, and others, that we simply don’t have.

We looked flimsy in defence, with weaknesses in all positions and lacking any direction.

Their worst defender would walk into our first team and our best defender wouldn’t even get on their bench.

It’s a disgrace that we are so far behind a club that are less profitable than us and the reason is because our board are lazy, tight and indecisive, with no ambition other than to make money.

In terms of ambition, organisation and decisiveness Liverpool are the opposite of us, we aren’t even in the same league.


#608

Agree with this mostly. However even if the board are only interested in a top 4 spot, even they now know that our policy wont sustain that anymore.
So if it is about making money that will have to change straight away. They may not be good football men but they know how to protect profit margins.


#609

I think our board understand that even if we were mid table we would still fill the stadium.
They know that falling out of the CL isn’t as bad financially as some have said it could have been and that just competing for a CL is good enough.

It’s true that they want to make money from our limited success but realistically they know that just challenging for top four with a few cup runs thrown in is now considered good enough.

As supporters we have been lumbered with a board who a way behind other clubs in terms of ambition.
We can’t even brag we have the biggest stadium in London any more because spurs new stadium will be bigger.

We will have to be satisfied with what we have seen seen in recent seasons and watch all our rivals pull away from us.


#610

Did people actually do this? :joy:


#611

To boast you are the biggest club in London you have to be better than the others or have more support.
We have neither, compared with spurs.
We might be bigger historically but in recent t seasons there has been a definite shift away from us towards them.

I can tolerate not winning the PL or not being in the CL, but to watch that lot overtaking us is unacceptable.


#612

we have to be run better as a club.

We’ve been run like shit, while looking like we’re run well. It’s such a shambles. I don’t know when we will get out of this.


#613

A fan revolt?

Maybe the fans will make a stand after a couple of transfer windows. If it is a question of funds being released (or not being released, rather) then I can maybe see something along the likes of a boycott for 1 or 2 home games next season


#614

I’d like to think that would work, and to a certain extent when it happened the transfer window we bought Ozil, it seemed to have an effect.
But even when we splashed out 42m for him, we had gone several windows seeing our best players leave and it would have been the first season where didn’t have a genuine world class player, so the board were forced into a corner and even Wenger admitted that Ozil wasn’t a player he had been chasing but when the offer came up he said “it was too good to turn down.”

Also, Kroenke rarely attends matches so any sort of protest or revolt would be pointless and I don’t think Kroenke could care less as he doesn’t support us, or even likes football.

These protests have happened at other clubs like Newcastle but they never seem to make much difference.

Kroenke bought the club because he saw a way of making massive profits with minimal investment and that’s exactly what he is going to continue to do.


#616

@ljungbergkamp

How did you rate the players mate?


#617

#618

^^^ exellent post, have said for a while Kroenke hasnt been stopping anything people are quick to jump on him. It is just sheer stupidity that even with Alexis we were once offered £60m but we rejected it to keep him for 1/2 a season more then swap him for nothing with Mhki…and this shit with ramsey etc all the players we should have binned when we could get something for them. Gross mismanagement.


#619

You’re talking directly out of your hole now saying we don’t have more support than spurs.


#620

This is total nonsense and you know it. Our fan base is exponentially bigger than Spurs both in London and across the world.


#621

That’s true.
We have lost Wilshere and Sanchez for a fraction of what we could have got them for and sold Perez for around 3m after only playing just a few cup games when we had bought him for almost a club record, for a striker, at 17m.
It looks like we could also lose Ramsey on a free who was worth around 40m a couple of seasons ago.

It’s amazing the amount of players we want to get rid of but can’t because they are on massive wages, even if they are no good, yet players we want to keep are walking away and we’re getting almost nothing for therm.